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More than words for writer pals

Sinead Moriarty has just published her sixth novel (Pieces Of My Heart, Penguin Ireland) and is a mum of three. She is friends with novelist Monica McInerney, whose next book is due out in October. We found out what their friendship means to them.

>Sinead "I met Monica just after I had written my first book -- we did a library talk together about creative writing. When we met, we clicked and got on very well. Our friendship has grown since that day.

"I value Monica's friendship -- as a writer, she really understands what I'm going through and she's someone I ring up whether I'm tearing my hair out with my writing or when I have good news or a good review. Monica gives amazing advice and is really helpful.

"We have a similar sense of humour and the same work ethic. We tend to email each other a lot but when we do meet up for lunch, it might go on for quite a few hours as we have so much to talk about.

"I really admire Monica's wisdom and the fact that she's remained down to earth despite her great success. Our friendship has changed -- I think it's grown and matured and we've settled into an easy pattern with each other."

>Monica "Sinead and I met six years ago when we were invited by Sarah Webb to give a talk. We talked on the phone a couple of times beforehand and when we met, we instantly liked each other.

"I value so much about Sinead -- she's generous in her spirit, she's kind, she makes me laugh and she's a fantastic listener too. We can talk about everything -- our books, writing, the business side of things and we can talk about our family lives too.

"I think we're completely different in a lot of ways -- Sinead is blonde, I'm dark-haired, Sinead is Irish and I'm from Australia. I think that's why we get on so well -- we come to the table with different experiences. I think some things are important to us both -- like our families and our writing.

"My husband laughs when I come back from a lunch with Sinead because I'll always think of something that I forgot to tell her. And he'll wonder how that's possible after being with her for five or six hours! It doesn't matter how long it's been since we've seen each other -- we'll just pick up from the last time we talked."

Next week: Dublin Rose Niamh Sherlock and her sister Eadaoin


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